Asian American Medical Hazard: Stroke

My doctor has always considered my high blood pressure to be a significant concern, and she makes sure I am managing it effectively.  After thinking about the Asian Americans that I know who have had a stroke and this recent report and video, I should really be thankful.  Preliminary results from an analysis of 1.7 million stroke cases between 2004 and 2016 reveal that Asian Americans are more likely to have more severe ischemic strokes and worse outcomes than whites.   In addition, Asian Americans studied were less likely to receive clot busting stroke treatment, although this difference seems to diminish during the studied time period. Study lead author Dr. Sarah Song, who revealed the initial results at the American Stroke Association International Stroke Conference, said:

“Asian Americans may have a distinctive pathophysiologic profile of ischemic stroke than whites.   Regardless, this study highlights the need for more focused research, improved stroke prevention and possibly different treatment strategies for Asian Americans.”

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Asian Waistlines and Heart Disease

potbellyWhile waist size is an indicator for potential hypertension (high blood pressure) and heart disease, the standards for Asians is stricter stricter than for non-Asians.    This is similar to the situation with Asians and Body Mass Index (BMI), where standards for a healthy BMI are stricter for Asians.  The Mayo clinic lists the following as problematic waist sizes:

Men are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 40 inches (102 centimeters, or cm).
Women are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 35 inches (89 cm).
Asian men are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 36 inches (91 cm).
Asian women are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 32 inches (81 cm).

Limited data seems to indicate that these numbers are low for Pacific Islanders and African AmericansWaist measurements are said to be better indicators than weight or (BMI) for potential heart disease and death for people of normal weight.

(Flickr Photo Credit: TinkerTailor)